Sunday, July 29, 2018

Training log - Week ending 7/29/18

This week was 52 miles of running, 15 "miles" of pool-running, and 3000 yards of swimming -- training log is here.

Last week of what-the-heck-ing, with an aerobic run, a hill workout, and a casual tempo workout on the roads as my quality for the week.   I'm back on the track next week.  As a runner, at least. 

I technically returned to the track this week, substituting in for my coach while he went on vacation, as has become our annual habit.  I enjoy subbing in for the week - it's both fun and educational.  And one of the things I re-learn every year is just how much work goes into managing a track workout.

Timing a track workout is a skill, and takes practice.  It'd be much easier if our team was composed of those running identical paces.  But we're a diverse team, and so there are  multiple groups to time and monitor simultaneously.

To time, I use a timing app on my phone that lets me set up different clocks running in
the timing app - if I have more
than 5 clocks going,
I have to scroll up and down
parallel.  For an interval workout, I start everyone on the same clock for the first interval, and then see how that interval plays out.  People naturally separate into different groups during the first interval, so after that interval I mentally divide everyone into "group A," "group B," etc; assigning a different clock to each.  

For me at least, once I have more than three groups running, it's hard to remember which group matches each clock.  That's where educated guessing comes in.  I have a general sense of the splits each group should be running, and so as that group approaches me, I look at my virtual collection of clocks and pick the split that makes the most sense for that group.  

This, of course, is easier when everyone is doing a short, even workout like 6x800.  Longer intervals like 3x1600 can get a bit trickier, since on our team, 5:02 could easily be a 1200 split or a mile split, depending on the runner.  (Though longer intervals are also easier in that there's less of them to time.)

Ladders or pyramids (like 400/800/1200/1200/800/400) increase the difficulty, since I have to remember which group is doing which distance - one group may be finishing up with their last 400 just as another group is finishing their second 1200. gets really tricky when people that were running together as one group decide to split up into different groups and start the next repeat at slightly different times.  This means I have to add additional clocks onto the bottom of my phone screen.  And then guess at which of two very similar splits applies to which person as they approach.

That, of course, is just the timing aspect.  There's also the whole watching how people are running aspect, trying to read whether the workout needs to be adjusted or someone needs to be shut down.  Even though nearly everyone on my team is an experienced runner who generally knows when to pull the plug to stop further damage, it's still easier emotionally for the runner if someone else makes the decision.

When I first started running with a team, I had totally unrealistic expectations for how workouts would go, based on my years of riding.  I was used to riding around a course of fences or a ring while someone watched me carefully and called out instructions as needed.  This was followed by a minute or two of hashing out (sometimes painfully) what I had just done and how to improve it.  And then we'd go again, unless we were done.

I thought track workouts would be similar, and was surprised when my coach wasn't necessarily aware of how I had split each interval, and didn't have a lot of feedback on my running form after each lap.  But while riding lessons are exercises in individual scrutiny, track workouts are just big plate-spinning contests for whomever is managing them.   I've since learned that it's amazing how much feedback and guidance I do get when I run a workout.  I have no idea how my coach does it.


Monday: Yoga and 8 "miles" of pool-running.  Foam rolling at night.

Tuesday: 9 miles aerobic (7:51) and then 900 yards of recovery swimming.  Foam rolling at night.

Wednesday:  9.5 miles very easy (9:03) plus drills, strides, upper body weights and core.  Foam rolling at night.

 11.5 miles, including 8 hill repeats (each repeat is ~550m up, then ~200m jog, ~200m stride, and ~150m jog down to base of hill).  Followed with injury prevention and lower body strengthwork, and 1100 yards recovery swimming, plus foam rolling.

Friday: 7 "miles" of pool-running and yoga.  Foam rolling in the evening.

Saturday: 12.5 miles, including a tempo workout of 2x2 miles in 13:08 (6:38/6:30) and 13:23 (6:42/6:41) .  Followed with injury prevention and lower body strengthwork, and 1000 yards recovery swimming, plus foam rolling.

Sunday:  9.5 miles very easy (9:08), followed by drills, stride, upper body weights/core and foam rolling.

Sunday, July 22, 2018

Training log - Week ending 7/22/2018

This week was 51 miles of running, 17 "miles" of pool-running, and 1000 yards of swimming -- training log is here (when it comes back online - RunningAhead is down right now).

Another mixed up week.  Since I raced last Saturday night and thus spent Sunday in the pool/yoga studio, Monday became a modified long run day.  Since I'm not racing anything longer than 5K for the next few months and had another race on Wednesday, I kept my Monday "long run" to 9 miles.

Wednesday night was my second try at the mile double - this time with much less time in between the two.  And the second mile went just about as one would expect.  But I'm still happy I tried it.  You never know whether you can pull stuff off like that unless you try.

Additionally, I feel like my fitness has been coming back quickly - Saturday's hill workout went surprisingly well. Of course, some of that may have been that that hill repeats that last less than 2 minutes just don't seem that intimidating after racing repeat miles.  But I think there is something to "racing yourself into fitness," and that mile races are probably very good for that, due to the intensity, short duration, and relatively quick recovery.

One more week of what-the-hecking, with just hills and medium distance aerobic long runs, and then I'll be back on the track.  


Monday: 9 miles aerobic (8:10), plus drills and strides.  Foam rolling at night.

Tuesday: Upper body strengthwork and core and then 8 "miles" pool-running.  Foam rolling in afternoon..

Wednesday:  In the morning, 3 mile shakeout (9:22).  In the afternoon, some DIY yoga and another 3 mile warm-up, and then a pair of mile races in 5:44 and 5:57, with one mile very easy in between.  9 miles total for the day.

 In the morning, 9 "miles" of pool-running.  Massage in the afternoon.

Friday: 8.5 miles very easy (9:09) plus drills and strides, and then upper body strengthwork and core.  Foam rolling in the afternoon.

Saturday: 12.5 miles, including 8 hill repeats (each repeat is ~550m up, then ~200m jog, ~200m stride, and ~150m jog down to base of hill).  Followed with injury prevention and lower body strengthwork, and 1000 yards recovery swimming, plus foam rolling.

Sunday:  12 miles very easy (8:55), followed by DIY yoga and foam rolling.

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Race Report: Harrisburg Mile, July 18, 2018

I ran two heats of the Harrisburg mile yesterday, running 5:44 for the 40-49 heat (and the female win in that heat) and then 5:57 in the elite heat for a new personal worst, absolute last in the elite heat, and the masters female elite win (because I was the only female masters elite).

And I had a lot of fun.  Totally worth it.

I like road miles.  And they're relatively few and far between, which is why I like to run them whenever I can make it happen.  The Harrisburg Mile had been recommended to me by a friend some time ago - at that time I had nixed it as too close in time to the Liberty Mile in Pittsburgh.  The Harrisburg Mile was on Wednesday and the Liberty Mile was on Friday - no way I could miss that much work right now.

But my preference for the Liberty Mile was based on being fit enough to justify the 4+ hour drive each way.  My performances this past weekend in Fredericksburg confirmed that I was NOT fit.  Which made a two hour drive to Harrisburg more appealing, as compared to the four hour drive to Pittsburgh.

(and yes, I could just not race at all, but that's crazy talk).

So Harrisburg it was.  Which was actually a bit special to me - Harrisburg, Pennsylvania is not only the state capital, but also home of the Pennsylvania National Horse Show each fall - a really big deal in certain horsey circles, where it's the equivalent of the Boston Marathon or Footlocker Final, depending on which division you show in.

I'd last been to Harrisburg in the early 90s, when I showed there.  It had been 26 years since I'd been to Harrisburg.  About time to go back, minus the horse this time.
(obligatory early 90s Harrisburg video)


I left home at 1:30 and got up to Harrisburg 2 hours later.  The East Shore YMCA was located at the finish line and was also the site for late registration/bib pick-up.  I had originally planned to use a local Golds Gym as my home base for the afternoon, but decided to buy a day pass to the YMCA instead.  It was a good choice - besides the locker/shower/stretching areas that I needed, there was also a nice atrium area with tables, chairs, and wi-fi.  So after registering I was able to set up camp and get some work done before it was time to start stretching and warming up.

The Harrisburg mile featured multiple heats, with two of interest to me.  One was the 40-49 heat, where the top female time in recent years had been in the 6:3x range.  The other was the "elite" heat, open to women who had run sub-5:30 (me in the past, but not right now) and masters women who had run sub-6:00 (me right now).  The times in this heat in the past were all below 5:30 - significantly faster than what I was going to be able to run, and it didn't look like any masters women had ever run the elite heat.

So...I was completely in between heats.  Consistent with my theme of what-the-heck for this month, I decided to do both.

Of course, this was going to be a bit trickier than Fredericksburg.  In Fredericksburg, the course was a loop course, with the start and finish close together.  This course was a direct point-to-point.  In Fredericksburg, the two heats were an hour apart.  Here?  The 40-49 started at 7:25, and the elite heat at 7:45.  So...20 minutes to a) run a mile in something under 6 minutes, and then b) jog the mile back to the start for round 2.

A further complication was that I needed to wear two different bibs for the two heats, and so would have to swap bibs between heats.  With the tight time frame, I wouldn't have time to grab my bib from my car or the Y after the first race.  However, one of the timing officials at the start very graciously offered to hold my second bib while I ran the first race.

So that was set.  Now time to warm up.


When I had checked out the course, I noted that it was a net elevation gain (officially it's a "negative net drop" - which means a net gain).  I wasn't sure why this was - generally when races are point-to-point, they're positioned for a net drop unless there's some specific appeal to having an uphill course (mountain race or something like that).  

However, once I started jogging the course, it made more sense.  The course was mostly flat, just with some very slight undulations in the second half and then a climb in the last 200m to the finish.  The course was also set along the banks of the Susquehanna, with the prevailing wind coming off of the river from the northwest.  Which meant that running the slightly uphill way also meant a nice tailwind for the whole course.

Net elevation gain or not, this was a very fast course.  And we had a gorgeous evening to boot.

I warmed up with 2 miles of jogging, a half-mile at 5K-ish effort, and then some jogging before another 60 seconds very hard.  I felt good and ready to go.  So some strides and then we lined up.

There was the standard starting line chatter about what people were planning to run.  When asked my PR, I answered truthfully. 

"So why aren't you in the elite heat"?

"Well...I'm doing that one too...."


Then the gun went off.  My half-baked plan was to hold back and just get the win, assuming times were the same as in past years), and then double back for the elite heat.  But plans don't always survive the start gun.

Several women surged ahead of me as I started carefully.  Within the first quarter mile I reeled them in, and was just running with guys.  But then I realized - I had no way to check on how close someone was behind me - how much I could ease off the gas.  

It was a mixed heat and I was running with guys, so I stayed with them, and then started passing guys as they faded.  We hit the final uphill to the finish and I guardedly kicked - making sure to preserve the win while not totally trashing myself.  

I broke the tape in 5:44 and that was nice.  People were congratulating me, but I had no time.  I had less than 15 minutes to jog back through the crowds to the start and change bibs.  And hopefully take a few deep breaths.


When I got back to the start line (unpinning my previous bib on the way), the starter guy kindly had my elite bib.  A quick pinning, and I lined up again. 3 minutes until the gun for this heat.

There were 3 elite women, including me, and about 12 elite men.  I was the only elite masters female.  I realized fairly quickly that I was likely by far the slowest person in this heat (not a total surprise).  Had I been in good mile fitness (and fresh), I might have been able to stay close to the other two women.  Now?  I had no chance.

But what the heck - I was there, I had the bib, and maybe if I ran the heat this year it would pull out more masters women next year.  And I also had to get back to the finish area anyway.  So what the heck.

The gun went off (again) and this time I was really really dropped.  I definitely hadn't rebounded at all from the previous race, and I was outclassed anyway.  I debated dropping for an instant, and then pressed on - good practice in dealing with discouraging situations during a race.  And it was just a mile, and I was getting plenty of sympathy cheers.

As I forged on in solitude, with the pack disappearing in the distance, I heard a bike behind me.  I couldn't figure out why it was there, and then I realized - it was the sweep rider, sticking right behind the very last runner on the course.

Well..this was new and different.  I've never been dead last in a race before.  First time for everything.

As I approached the finish a second time, I mustered the best kick I could (which wasn't much).  At least I was going to break 6.  And then I was done.  For good.  

Within 20 minutes, I had experienced the high of winning a race and the low of being dead fucking last.  Neat!.


I didn't do a cool-down.  I just hung out, grabbed my two awards for 1) winning the women's 40-44 age group and 2) winning the women's masters elite (by being the only entry).  Then I showered at the Y and pulled out for a fairly easy 2 hour drive home.

Splits were:
race 1: 86/87/87/83
race 2: 86/91/92/86

(taken with autolap on my Garmin)


In answer to the obvious question: would I do both races again?  Honestly, no.  It was too short a turnaround, but more importantly, I think I didn't run as fast in the first race as I would have if it had been my only race.  I ended up running it all out but not ALL OUT, since the second race was on my mind.  That cost me a second or two, I suspect.  And then the second race ended up nothing more than a solo time trial on tired legs in front of a sympathetic crowd.  

If I was in good shape and ready to go sub-5:30 again, I'd probably go with the elite heat.  In similar fitness to where I am right now - I'd stick with the 40-49 heat, where I would have plenty of men to run with at least.  It's a tough call, since I really was right between the two heats and didn't truly belong in either.  

But I am happy I tried both heats this time.  It was a lot of fun, I learned more about how quickly I can race a mile and recover, and I think it's a good story to tell.

Other notes:

  • The weather was glorious - blue skies, low humidity, high 70s.  Just a great evening for a race.
  • I wore the Takumi Sens for both heats of this race, and was glad I did.  Just a great shoe for this distance.
  • As for why I ran so much faster in the first race here than at Fredericksburg?  It's mostly explained by the difference in courses.  Having gotten that first rust-buster out of the way on Saturday helped slightly as well.
  • This is really a fantastic, well managed race, and a fairly easy drive from the DC area (especially if you live in the northwestern suburbs).  Highly recommended.  They have several heats for kids and other entertainment, so it would work well for a family day trip as well.

Monday, July 16, 2018

Training log - Week ending 7/15/2018

This week was 34 miles of running, 16 "miles" of pool-running, and 3000 yards of swimming -- training log is here.

The highlight of the week was my matched pair of mile races on Saturday night.  Those, plus an Iwo Jima hill workout on Wednesday, were my only quality of the week.

I actually wasn't too beaten up on Sunday, which I think is a result of being out of shape.  For a mile, you have to be in good mile fitness in order to run it hard enough to hurt, both during and after the race.  If you're out of shape, it just doesn't take that much out of you.  It's the exact opposite of a marathon in that sense, since marathons hurt more if you're not trained well.

No track for me this week, and that will continue for another 2 weeks.  Instead, I'll stick with hills, moderate runs, and road mile races.  And a whatever mentality to training.

I'm not under any illusions that this is an optimal way to train in the short term - if I really cared about my race performances in the next few weeks, I'd be hitting the track, doing progression runs, and keeping all of my other runs at a crawl.  But I think a few weeks of "what-the-heck" are a really good investment in the long term.  I'm keeping a moderate level of fitness up and having some fun while avoiding structured/timed workouts - a mental break.  

I'm already missing those workouts, which is a good thing.  By the time I return to the track, I'll be really eager and emotionally fresh, which will set me up well for training that will last from August-September (shorter stuff) through my training cycle for CIM in December.


Monday: Yoga and 8 "miles" of pool-running in the morning, plus foam rolling.  

Tuesday: 9 miles very easy (9:16) plus drills and strides.  Then upper body strengthwork and core.  Foam rolling in afternoon..

10 miles, including 6 hill repeats (~550m up, then ~200m jog, ~200m stride, and ~150m jog down to base of hill). Followed with injury prevention work and 1000 yards easy swimming. Foam rolling at night.

 Strengthwork and core plus 8 "miles" of pool-running in the morning.  Foam rolling at night.

Friday: 8 miles very easy (9:28) plus drills and strides.  Followed with DIY yoga. Later did another mile to test a different pair of shoes.  Foam rolling at night.

Saturday: In the morning, DIY yoga.    In the evening, 3 mile warm-up, and then a mile race in 5:52.  Another mile shakeout, and then another mile race in 5:53.

Sunday:  Yoga and 2000 yards of swimming  Foam rolling at night.

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Race Report: Fredericksburg Downtown Mile Race for CASA, July 14, 2018

I ran the Fredericksburg Downtown Mile for CASA last night (twice) in 5:52 and 5:53.  The first race was at 6:15 pm in the women's over 40 heat; I then doubled back an hour later in the open heat.

So...I'm consistent, at least.

I really like to race just after coming off of a break.  To me, it's an especially pure and fun kind of racing, since you're free of the expectations imposed by training.  You just get out there and see what happens.

I also really like road miles, and wish there were more of them.  So...when I saw that there was a road mile in Fredericksburg, a scant 50 or so miles away, entering was an easy choice.  Fredericksburg is a lot closer than Pittsburgh, which was the last time I raced a road mile.

Of course, it's been a year since I've last raced the mile, and I've trained for and run three marathons in the space between.   But, I'm planing on focusing on this distance for the next few months, with the goal of placing well at the US Masters Road Mile Champs in Michigan in late August, and then hopefully PRing at the 5th Avenue Mile in early September.  So it made a lot of sense to just jump in and race this distance, and get familiar with it again.  It's the ripping a band-aid off approach to life.


The drive down to Fredericksburg sucked.  Because it involved I-95 in Northern Virginia, of course.  I had originally planned to drive down earlier in the day, and hang out in Fredericksburg and run some errands there (I could drop stuff off at the UPS store and buy non-perishables as easily there as I could here).  But, after seeing the traffic reports, I decided to hang out at home and wait until the early afternoon, when the worst of the southbound traffic had passed.

Note to self - not a great idea.  Because while the traffic was better on a whole in the afternoon, the toll express lanes switched from southbound to northbound.  I would have been better off just leaving earlier, and using the toll lanes.  So now I know for next time.

Just slightly less than 2 hours after leaving home (yes, ~2 hours for ~50 miles), I pulled into the Golds Gym of Fredricksburg, where I took 30 minutes to foam roll and stretch everything from the car ride before heading over to the race site to pick up my bib.  Actually bibs.  I had entered two heats just in case I felt like running both, but each heat required a separate bib.  So I pinned one on and dropped the other off at my car, hoping I'd have the presence of mind to remember to switch if I ran both heats.


Then I warmed up by jogging 3 miles, mostly easy, but with about a quarter mile pretty hard.  As part of my warm-up, I jogged the course twice to get a feel for it.  It rolled a fair bit, with a gentle downhill start followed by a solid climb in the second quarter.  Then do a 180 around a very small island in the road, and back down and then up again, before turning left to kick it in over the final 200 meters.

Strides, drills, chat with others, make new friends, more strides, and then we lined up.  I set my Garmin to autolap every quarter mile.  Not because I'd be checking splits during the race, but so that I had them after.  Also, since this road mile wasn't marked in between the start and finish lines, I knew I'd find the buzzing of the Garmin every quarter helpful.


The start of the race was a bit awkward.  They were attempting to time the start with a traffic light at some point down the course - I'm guessing for traffic flow purposes.  What this meant was that the gun was supposed to go off right after the light changed to green.  However, some of us (myself included) misinterpreted the instructions to mean we were supposed to start when the light turned green.  Thus,a false start.  After being called back to the line, we waited through another cycle of the light.  And then the light turned green and THEN the gun went off, and we were off.

As is pretty normal for me, I was dropped in the first 200m.  I knew that the downhill start would suck people out, and so I wanted to hang back a little before starting to build.  By the end of the first quarter, I was in second, around 5 seconds behind the first woman.    I decided to stay in contact with her, and then pull ahead when she started to struggle on the uphill in the last quarter.

So I pursued, running the uphill a bit more aggressively than I would have liked, but I never got closer than 2 seconds behind her.  And then we hit the last quarter, and it was I who started to struggle while she pulled ahead.  She won, leading wire-to-wire (major kudos for that), while I tied up in the last 200 meters.

As I approached the clock, I saw it counting into the 5:5x, and thought "that can't be right."  But it was.


After sitting and collecting myself for a few minutes, I went back to my car to grab my second bib.  I was still undecided on whether I was up for round 2, but I could jog a bit and then decide.  I also decided to change shoes, from my new Adidas Sub-2s to my much loved Adidas Takumi Sens.  This was as close as I would get to doing an apples-to-apples comparison of the two.

After jogging a mile, I decided to go for the second heat.  My legs were heavy and stiff, but how I feel before a race isn't a good indicator of how I'll feel during the race.  And it was also fun to try just as an experiment to see how I handled back-to-back races, in case it was helpful in the future.

So, I did EVEN MORE drills and strides, we lined up, and we were off.   Again.

The second race was, unsurprisingly, much like the first.  I was dropped and then worked my way up through people.  The fact that it was a mixed open heat meant that there were more people in the heat, which meant more people to start out ahead of me, and then be passed.  By the turnaround, I was third woman, with the first two women a good 8-10 seconds ahead.

I felt much better during the final quarter this time around, and was able to open up and hammer home.  The result?  5:53 and third woman.  And at least this time seeing 5:5x wasn't that much of a shock.


Splits for the two races were:

Heat 1: 85/91/83/90 (+2 seconds - Garmin claimed course was slightly long)
Heat 2: 87/95/84/88 (Garmin said course was right on - 1.0 miles)

Since I was using Garmin's autolap, and GPS isn't perfect, there's unquestionably some range of error included in these splits.  And no, the fact that my Garmin measured the course as 1.02 the first time and 1.0 the second doesn't mean that the course was magically reset between heats, or that the circumference of the earth is continually changing, or that I somehow didn't run the tangents.  It just shows that Garmins have a range of error, and are not perfect.


I found it really interesting that, despite running essentially the same time twice, the second race felt much better.  I think that this was in part the shoe change - the Takumi Sens just feel so much better at mile pace than the sub-2s do.  It might also be because I always feel best in the last rep of a workout, or because it was cooler for the second heat.

Or, as my coach pointed out, because I went out slower in the second heat....

I think the answer is all of the above.  So in my next mile race, I'm going to use my Takumi Sens.  I'll also warm up a bit more thoroughly - doing more than one hard 400 before the race.  And of course, I'll try to start slower.

Other notes:

  • I'll confess I had naive hopes that I'd be able to run faster - I knew I wasn't going to PR, but I had felt surprisingly quick during the two Iwo Jima hill workouts that I've done since my post-marathon break.  My thought was that the leg speed I noted during the hill workouts would combine with all that marathon fitness and strength into a decent mile performance.  Nope.  Instead I ran a pair of personal worsts for the distance.  My take-away is that the strength needed to race the mile well is different from marathon strength.  Marathon strength meant that I could run the mile twice all out with equivalent performances.  But it didn't help me power through either individual race.  Noted.
  • The above does not mean, BTW, that I regret doing this race.  I'm really happy I did it.  It was a lot of fun and now I've got my feel back for this distance.  I also now know what my current fitness is.  I don't like where I am, fitness-wise, but that's what training is for.
  • Temps were 88 degrees for the first heat, and 82 for the second.  Hot, but I don't think it affected my performance.
  • I wore my singlet instead of a sportsbra, despite the heat, to see if it would bother me any.  Truth is, it's much easier to pin a number to a singlet than to my shorts (which I have to do if I wear a sports bra).  And...I was definitely much less comfortable in the singlet.  But I also don't think it affected my performance any.  For a longer race in the heat, I definitely need to stay with the sports bra.
  • I'm allergic to something in Fredericksburg.  My eyes started watering and I started sneezing during my warm-up there, and almost 24 hours later my eyes are still puffy and I'm congested.  I have no idea what it is, though.
  • It kills me that I liked the Takumi Sens so much more than the Sub-2s.  I had really hoped that the Sub-2s would replace my Takumi Sens, since the latter shoes are over 3 years old, and have proven impossible to replace.  But, I only have 150 miles on the Takumi Sens so far, and they are Adidas Boost, which seems to last forever.  So maybe I can just use them for a few more years, if I save them for road miles.

Monday, July 9, 2018

Training log - Week ending 7/8/2018

This week was 55 miles of running, 17 "miles" of pool-running, and 3000 yards of swimming -- training log is here.

I started to get back into things with my first "real" workout on Friday - Iwo Jima hills.  It's a loop course with each loop being 2/3rds of a mile.  We run reasonably hard uphill (though the focus is on power not speed) for a bit less than 2 minutes, jog slowly to recover and reset, followed by a 30-35 second downhill stride to work on turnover before more downhill jogging to the start of the next loop.  It's not intended to be a continuous aerobic workout, though it does have some aerobic benefit.  It's more for power and speed development, as an off-season thing.  

It is possible to turn this workout into an undulating tempo-ish thing by running the recoveries too fast and not varying the pace of the workout too much.   However, I'm intentionally switching gears and focusing on road miles for the next two months or so. Thus, speed development is my priority, so I was careful to keep the recoveries very slow so I could focus fully on each hard/fast part, per my coach's guidance for this workout.

As part of my gear switching for the rest of the summer, with my coach's approval I'm also going to be limiting my long runs to no more than 12 miles, and avoiding marathon pace during the run.  I've done a ton of marathon pace work this year, and there's really no need for me to touch on that pace again until training for CIM starts in September.

At the same time, I very rarely run at "moderate pace" (for me, that's usually 7:30-7:45-ish - I also refer to this as "aerobic" running).  While my coach includes moderate running in some schedules on the day after track intervals, I've always just subbed in easy running instead (with his approval).  This is not because there aren't benefits from training at moderate/aerobic pace, but rather because I've learned I can't run at that pace on a non-workout day and be recovered in time for the next workout.   You can't benefit from your training if you're not recovering sufficiently.

However, I do think that there is fitness to be gained by doing some running at that pace, and if I'm not doing a long marathon training run, I can just sub in a moderate pace run of medium distance instead on that day, treating that run as one of my 2-3 workouts for the week.


Monday: Yoga and 8.5 "miles" of pool-running in the morning, plus foam rolling.  

Tuesday: 11 miles, including 8 short hill strides of 60-70 strides each, with 2:30 jogging downhill recovery.  Followed with lower body injury prevention work and 1150 yards of swimming.   Sports massage in afternoon.

Wednesday: 8 miles very easy (9:19) to yoga, yoga, and then another 4 miles very easy (9:14) plus drills and strides and foam rolling

 Strengthwork and core plus 8.5 "miles" of pool-running in the morning.  Foam rolling at night.

Friday: 10 miles, including 6 hill repeats (~550m up, then ~200m jog, ~200m stride, and ~150m jog down to base of hill). Followed with injury prevention work and 1150 yards easy swimming. Foam rolling at night.

Saturday: 10 miles easy (9:04) plus drills, strides, and upper body weights/core.  Foam rolling in the afternoon.

Sunday:  12 miles aerobic (7:43).  Followed with lower body injury prevention work and 700 yards of swimming.  Foam rolling at night.

Sunday, July 1, 2018

Training Log - Week ending 7/1/2018

This week was 52 miles of running, 16 "miles" of pool-running, and 1000 yards of swimming -- training log is here.

Pretty boring.  Just relaxed running, pool-running, and yoga, with a bit of weights work.  And also catching up with all those routine appointments - mammography, bloodwork for physical, routine follow-ups with specialists, etc.  

I've learned to schedule all that stuff for either late-June or mid-December -- those are the two times of year that I can be sure that I'm not tapering or racing.  This is because I've discovered the hard way that when you schedule a doctor's appointment or exam a year or so in advance and then later (much later) decide to race that same week, it's about impossible to reschedule the appointment.  

It's much better just to plan way ahead and book that stuff for a week when you're pretty sure you won't be doing anything of significance, running-wise.  The downside is that you end up with everything compressed into a week dedicated to poking and prodding and scanning and boob-squishing.

And fasting.  Having my breasts crushed by a big machine in a pink room really doesn't bug me that much, but goddammit I hate fasting.

Running-wise, recovery goes well.  I'm a bit more tired and sore than I was after Boston, but much less than I was after Hartford last year.  Which supports my theory that, for myself at least, my marathon recovery is directly and strongly affected by the temperature of the race.  The cooler the race, the quicker the recovery.

As part of phasing stuff back in, I added post-run drills early this week, and then strides at the end of the week.  The drills felt awkward at first, and then smoother later in the week.  The strides were similarly rough, but I expect a similar improvement curve.

I'm still sticking with my MO of only doing what I want to do when I wake up each morning.  Of course, that doesn't look that different from my normal routine.  Which is probably why I don't have trouble following my normal routine.

In other news, I received my Moose Mug this week.  The Moose Mug is a tradition dating back a long time, to the Runners World Online Forums ("RWOL"). The forums are no more, but two traditions remain: the writings of the dearly missed Jim2, and the Moose Mug.  The latter is a custom mug offered to any forumite who could run a marathon faster than 2 hours plus their age (if male) or 2 hours and 20 minutes plus their age, if female.  

I joined the RWOL forums as a very new runner, and a Moose Mug was a holy grail.  My 3:02:58 at Grandma's earned me my Moose Mug, and it's going to occupy prime real estate on the trophy shelf.


Monday: Yoga and 8 "miles" of pool-running in the morning, plus foam rolling.  

Tuesday: 9 miles very easy (9:14) plus drills and some strengthwork, then foam rolling.

Wednesday: 6 miles very easy (9:11) to yoga, yoga, and then another 4 miles very easy (9:21) plus drills.  Foam rolling at night

 Strengthwork and core plus 8 "miles" of pool-running in the morning.  Foam rolling at night.

Friday: 5 miles very easy (9:09) to yoga, yoga, and then another 5 miles very easy (9:01) plus drills and strides.

Saturday: 10 miles easy (9:04) plus drills, strides, and upper body weights/core.  Foam rolling in the afternoon.

Sunday:  12.5 miles - most of this run was very easy (9:11 pace), but I did a slight progression at the end, running 8:06/7:35/7:17/7:17 for the last 4 miles.  Followed with lower body injury prevention work and 1000 yards of swimming.  Foam rolling at night.